Home of the Huskee

The North Carolina-based fast food restaurant Hardees’s was launched in in September of 1960 by Wilbur Hardee. The chain of shops rapidly grew and many towns throughout the southeast would have one. Charlottesville was no exception.

20980002 - Version 2This photo shows the Hardee’s location on Emmet Street.

The distinct roof seen here was part of the original marketing and design of the Hardee’s buildings. The catch words and slogans (“Home of the Huskee” can be read at the very top of this sign) were also part of the branding.

According to the Wikipedia entry on Hardee’s: “Many original Hardee’s were built with a hexagonal style building with a pointed roof. In keeping with that theme, for a short period of time, Hardee’s hamburgers were actually hexagonal particularly the quarter-pound patties. Some early locations had lobbies, but almost all were fresco-walk-up style. As of 1965, franchisees had a choice of four different free-standing signs, with the “Home of the Huskee” slogan designated HH-1. Another promised “Jet Service – Charco Broiled” Burgers. Some were called Hardee’s L’il Chef with a little chef on the sign.”

The first Hardee’s store was in Rocky Mount North Carolina, located (ironically) on McDonald Street.

Wilbur Hardee lost the controlling interest in his business in a poker game with the winners building the business into a chain of nearly 2000 stores.

20980002In this wider view you can see the 250 overpass and Rt. 29 (Emmet St.)

photoToday this location is the AT&T store on Emmet.  If you drive around back you can see the remnants of the old Hardee’s roof.

20980014  Hardee’s Charlottesville store would later have this simpler sign and get competition on Emmet Street from Arby’s.

20980001Arby’s would boast it’s own distinctive roof line.

IMG_8032In this aerial view near Barracks Road, you can see the Arby’s restaurant survives while two doors up only the hexagonal roof of the Hardee’s remains.



Holsinger At 100: August 24, 1913

getStaticImage-20One hundred years ago, Rufus Holsinger took this portrait of Miss Ellie Wood Page and her aunt, both on horseback on University Way, just above Lambeth Field.

DSC_1308This photograph shows the same view today.

Ellie Wood Page’s mother ran a boarding house on the Corner at UVA.  Some of the students boarding there tacked up a sign on the street corner affectionately naming the street Ellie Wood Avenue.  The name stuck and today is a busy side street off University Avenue, home of long-time Corner businesses like Eljo’s, The Biltmore, and Ragged Mountain Running Shop.

getStaticImage-19Lambeth Field was just below University Way and was the home field of UVA’s football team.  This photo, also by Holsinger, shows the Cavaliers in the autumn of 1913. The goal posts were right on the front edge of the end zone and helmets were optional gear back then.

DSC_1317DSC_1315The two houses seen in the upper right of the top photo (with Ellie Wood Page) are along University Circle.  Both still stand today.

 Holsinger photos are courtesy Special Collections, UVA Library

All other images © Trumbull Photography

The Changing Face of West Main

IMG_8255 Over the next couple of years some major changes will occur on West Main Street. Several multi-story, mixed-use buildings will go up in locations that have gone unchanged in decades. The most recent building now slated for demolition is the Republic Plaza Building seen in the aerial view above (center, with blue-green roof). It is less than three decades old but will be replace by a much larger building that will also include the location of the old Safeway building next door (large one-story with black roof). The old Charlottesville Motors Building was recently demolished leaving the open construction site seen here on the south side of West Main Street.

1160This second photograph shows this same section of West Main Street on the ground, looking east in the 1970s.  Over the next many months we will run a series of posts on the changing face of West Main. We have hundreds of photographs of this part of town and we are aggressively documenting the changes now underway. Both the new and old photos can be seen in posts, slideshows and exhibits produced by Charlottesville Historical Image Library.  Keep checking back here or follow us on Facebook for updates.

For now, you can also check out some Then and Now photo pairings on our Charlottesville Then and Now website.

All work © CHIL; aerial photo by Steve Trumbull; 1970s photo courtesy Preston Coiner and part of the Coiner Collection at CHIL

President Coolidge

getStaticImage - Version 2This photograph from the Holsinger Collection at UVA shows President Calvin Coolidge visiting Charlottesville toward the end of his second term in office.

He is seen here, in November 1928, on the steps of the First Baptist Church, which sat on the corner of East Jefferson and Second St. (now Hon. Preston Coiner Street). The front entrance of the church was angled, facing Lee Park (though the church construction pre-dated the building of Lee Park by a couple of decades).

We believe the woman on the steps behind the President is the First Lady and the gentleman over Coolidge’s left shoulder is the Virginia Governor at the time, Harry Byrd (later also a U.S. Senator). Coolidge, a New Englander, was a Congregationalist. We are not sure what service or gathering was taking place but also seen here is Rev. George Petrie of Charlottesville Presbyterian Church (which stood a block away).

The info accompanying the image at Special Collections says “At University of Virginia” but  close examination of the steps, doorway and other architectural elements lead us to believe this is indeed the First Baptist Church on Jefferson St.  It would be destroyed by fire in 1977 as the congregation was building their new church (and current location) on Park St.

img161 img165Both of these dramatic images were taken by Ed Roseberry on the February night in 1977 when the church burned. A gorgeous infrared photo by Roseberry was taken from the belfry more than two decades before and can be seen in our recent “rare photographs” post.

Holsinger photo (accession #9862) courtesy Special Collections, UVA Library.

The Roseberry images are from digital scans done by Charlottesville Historical Image Library and are part of our Roseberry Collection at CHIL

Thanks to Sandra DeKay for identifying the Rev. George Petrie, adding to the interest and intrigue of the image.

“Rare Photographs of C’ville” (part 1)

We concluded last night’s show with a montage of rare photos of some of the diners, drive-ins, and dives (with an affectionate nod to our favorite Food Network show for the title). We featured several locations from the 50s, 60s and 70s that brought back memories of younger days to many in the audience.


Thanks to everybody that came out to the show. We had a great crowd with lots of good questions and comments. The photos ranged from The Rotunda at UVA to lesser known subjects of our town’s history like Schenk’s Branch. The show was built largely on the photographs we have received from local citizens and businesses that have not been shown before. We are continually adding to the collection so more of this “hidden history” is sure to come. I enjoyed seeing many familiar faces in the crowd last night as well as some first-time folks joining in for an entertaining evening. Thanks to all!

With multiple images for each topic we were able to do mini-histories from around town, featuring a number of never-before-seen images. Below is the complete outline of the presentation.  We are likely to run this show again at some point but we have great photos coming from many new sources and we are excited to show as many as possible in the months ahead. Stay tuned!

“Rare Photographs of C’ville” (part 1)

Park Street Houses
First Baptist Church (Second and Jefferson Streets)
1909 Fire on Main Street
Schenk’s Branch
View From Bank Building
1200 West Main Street
Free Bridge
The Rotunda, UVA
Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives


The photographs spanned more than 100 years and came to us primarily from private citizens willing to share items from there own collections. We scan the print or negative to create a digital file and return the original to the owner.  If you have any photographs that might be of historical interest, don’t hesitate to contact us:


Thanks again to everyone who contributed to last night’s show, making the evening both informative and entertaining.  See you next time!

Both the images in this post are from the Roseberry Collection at CHIL, are copyrighted,  and should not be reproduced. “The Pit” was located on Ivy Road where Dragon Lady is today. The second photo was taken in the early 1950s from the belfry of the First Baptist Church when it stood on Second and Jefferson Streets.


August Shows

This month we will have two photo presentations at C’ville Coffee on Harris Street.img004The first show is this coming Thursday and is a collection of rare photographs we have gathered from a wide range of sources. Many of these images will be shown in public for the first time this Thursday. The subjects include Free Bridge, long forgotten businesses on West Main, and a number of photos of the First Baptist Church that used to stand on Jefferson Street. We have vintage aerial views, a President visiting Charlottesville, and an historic fire that wiped out an entire block on Main Street over 100 years ago. This is one slideshow not to be missed! August 8 at 7 pm.

The second show is next Sunday, August 11, at 5 pm. this show will be an encore of the “Films of C’ville” show with a few new changes to the presentation.  Buddy Voshell will be on hand again to narrate his father’s hand-held movies from the late 20s and early 30s. If you missed this one before, here is your chance to see some vintage film footage of UVA and C’ville.  Even if you saw these clips, there are some new additions to this show you’ll enjoy seeing.

Both shows are $5.

The above photo is of the Belmont Bridge circa 1900. The exact date and photographer are unknown. It is an outtake from our Thursday evening show. Although it won’t be included, many other rare and seldom-seen C’ville images will be.